Both the CFO and the CEO stuck their hand into the air as I concluded my keynote and called for questions. “Why don’t employees communicate up in an organization?” There was a little more than a twinge of frustration in the CEO’s question.  The CFO added his nod of dismay.

It’s a common conundrum in the C-suite—even from the brightest leaders in the boardroom.  The issue deserves serious thought because when downward communication dominates, problems go unresolved and innovation stalls.

the ceo magazine, growth culture,
Shawn Hunter, President & Founder, Mindscaling

What are you thinking about when you are thinking about obligation? What are you thinking about when you are thinking about the things you have to do?

Now, what are you thinking about when you are thinking about opportunity? What are you thinking about when you are thinking about the things you get to do?

The difference between these two things is the difference between indifference and energy, power, creativity and excellence. And it’s all in your mind, in how you see the world.

the ceo magazine, innovation,

During the Roman republic, the river Rubicon marked the boundary between the Roman province of Cisalpine Gaul to the north-east and Italy proper to the south. The river distinguished not only the geographic boundaries for the province but also the military restrictions for governors and magistrates. Therefore, rulers required generals to disband their armies before entering Italy, and if a general entered Italy while exercising command of an army, both the general and his soldiers became outlaws who automatically faced death.

Did you ever play a game as a child when you made up the rules as you went along? I’m guessing that those evolving rules often proved to be a source of contention!

Leaders at work find the same to be true. When managers decide to disregard their moral compass as the official business handbook, they begin to make up the rules as they move along. Anything can happen, and the situation frequently proves to be a source of conflict.

The Republican National Convention came to Cleveland and literally left with a bang . . . of fireworks shot over Lake Erie. The city learned lessons in security-police on bicycles are the most fluid to how to move masses of people-have every non-essential downtown employee work from home. We can learn from these communication lessons and apply them in our daily lives.

1. It’s not Red or Blue Just Boring

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